SNACKTASTROPHE: When Games + Food = Big Fat Man-Tears
Chris Tannhauser
United States
San Diego
California
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"I looked at my hands, I understood that one fine day, one fine evening to be precise, they would no longer be hands but some other awful thing." —Jack Kerouac
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There you are, reaching for the dice with your Cheetos-orange fingers when a can of Fresca gets in the way--the geyser hasn't even hit the cardboard yet and faces are sagging off of skulls as screams pre-load into throats...

Because your copy of DUNE will never be the same again.

You... spilled... on a GAME.

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1. Board Game: Outdoor Survival [Average Rating:4.64 Overall Rank:15275]
Chris Tannhauser
United States
San Diego
California
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"I looked at my hands, I understood that one fine day, one fine evening to be precise, they would no longer be hands but some other awful thing." —Jack Kerouac
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Okay, the game's crap, but does that mean Jimmy has to up-end an entire carton of sour cream onto the board? It's my 15th birthday, and I don't even have the game out of the box five seconds when Jimmy Hayslip's aborted chip-dip manuever wrecks it. Perhaps, though, it was simply Providence saving us from an evening of boredom.
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2. Board Game: Lord of the Rings [Average Rating:6.77 Overall Rank:698]
Chris Tannhauser
United States
San Diego
California
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"I looked at my hands, I understood that one fine day, one fine evening to be precise, they would no longer be hands but some other awful thing." —Jack Kerouac
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She takes a big swig of black tea with honey when someone, probably Derrick, delivers a punchline and she squirts a Chinese fan, the classic spit-take, all over Middle Earth. People were using their shirts to sop it up, they were so mortified. Some of the cards got mildewy and I had to store the game with a li'l dessicant packet in it to get it under control. FROM NOW ON, IF YOU HAVE A FUNNY YOU HOLD IT UNTIL EVERYONE SWALLOWS.
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3. Board Game: Titan [Average Rating:6.95 Overall Rank:790]
Chris Drake
United States
Springfield
Missouri
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A glass of red Kool-Aid, an arm reaching across the board to pick up a stack, a glass of red Kool-aid getting knocked over thus creating a mostly red masterboard. The sound of gun fire, a blood curdling scream, a red-blood stained floor, the sounds of sirens in the distance. Your honor, I told them to keep their drinks away from the table, but did they listen? No, they didn't! Fortunately the Judge is a fellow gamer and I am acquitted of all charges. The spill really hapenned, but I was able to replace it before this game started fetching outrageous prices.
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4. Board Game: Squad Leader [Average Rating:7.48 Overall Rank:472]
Chris Drake
United States
Springfield
Missouri
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While playing Squad Leader one day, a friend of mine stood up, picked up a stack of counters, looked through them and dropped one of them into his glass of coke (see previous Titan game entry for happenned next) spawning the phrase "oh man, I just dropped one of your counters in my coke"
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5. Board Game: Die Macher [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:185]
Randy Cox
United States
Clemson
South Carolina
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Oh, the humanity. I love Die Macher and it's tough to get a game toghether. Well, one Labor Day weekend, at a little get-together (minicon) we call "Thing" (this was, officially, at "Thing III, in the Cancer Belt [1999]"), I was all set to play. We had a group and were set up. All I had to do was run out to a convenience store for some kind of over-the-counter medicine and to tank up my one-week-old, current year model Pontiac minivan (go ahead, snicker). Then back to the hotel for this great game.

Well, a hurricane (really) had dumped a ton of water on Raleigh NC the day before, and unbeknownst to me, deposited a heavy amount of that H2O in the tanks at the local BP station. My trip turned into a several-hour-long nightmarish day that ended with me driving a rental car for a week (in which I had an accident on the return trip to Raleigh to pick up my damaged car). But that's another story.

So, I called the guys and said "you'll have to play without me." This was big, because the game was my copy and I almost never loan out games, as the players may choose not to adhere to my strict "no drinks, no food, else no game" creed.

And they didn't. In fact, someone purchased a round of White Russians for the game room, which included some of the people playing my copy of die Macher. If you're an adult and have ever had a White Russian, you'll realize why mostly-full glasses of the beverage remained precariously close to my game board.

And then a youngster (I think he may have been 5) came in to talk to his dad (one of the players and White Russian owners). And whaddayaknow, the kid knocked the drink right onto the board and all the green playing pieces and cards.

As if the brand new car destruction (water in the gas tank is baaaad) weren't enough, my copy of Die Macher would never be the same. But, you can't really fault a little kid--these things happen (I must be mellowing). We've successfully played since, though I usually play green so others don't have to endure a few cards sticking together. And last year, a friend sold me his never-used copy for $25. So all's well that ends well.
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6. Board Game: Catan [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:279] [Average Rating:7.23 Unranked]
Steve Zamborsky
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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Youth group all-nighter, 2000. I'm a new youth group leader, trying to get kids interested in games other than Monopoly. So I bring my copy of Settlers (original Mayfair version, see the pic). At this time, this was the only Eurogame I owned, I believe. So at 2 am I ask if anyone wants to play something different, something cool. Get three others, set everything up and teach the game. We're just about to start when Joe Dahlke comes in with a full glass of Coke. "Do you want to play, Joe?" "Nah, I just want to watch," setting the Coke on the table. Two minutes later, Coke floods Catan...Mr. Z is somewhat upset. Bless his heart, Joe pulled me aside and pulled out $20 to replace the game. I told him it was fine, don't worry about it. Still haven't replaced it to this day.
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7. Board Game: Risk [Average Rating:5.58 Overall Rank:14501]
Chester
United States
Temple
Texas
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Not sure if this one count......(first of all, I mean its Risk).

This was prior to my conversion to good games. A group of 6 of us got together for a marathon game of Risk. It was pretty tense and had been going on for a couple hours. I think 2 players had been eliminated. I was starting to get the upper hand and had just convinced myself that the game was in the bag (barring any spiteful dice-gods...which is always a big gamble).

The game was set up on a folding card table. Very large guy Aaron bends down to take a sip, replaces his glass on the floor by his recliner. In an attempt to reposition himself...he starts to fold his leg onto his lap. He's big...so he uses his hand to grab the leg and kind of pull it up (under pressure). Well...his hand slipped and the leg was released in much the same way that a catapault works. In the end, it looked like he kicked the flimsy little table and board with all of 300 lbs of force. There were literally pieces in the next room. It was completely unsalvagable...and my victory would remain unproven. I remember looking at him, then we all kind of looked at each other. There was nothing to say. We just put the game away.
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8. Board Game: Advanced Civilization [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked]
Nate Sandall
United States
Portland
Oregon
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New Years Eve 2002 we were playing a six player game of Advanced Civilization and drinking vodka+cranberry. Around 2am it happened but fortunately the glass had been just sitting with only ice in it for a while so it wasn't full of liquid and it hit the civilization advance cards.

Now mind you my Advanced Civilization game is not in mint condition by any means. It's been well played over the years. The trade cards are yellowed and the counters show significant wear so I was (trying to be) cool while we sopped up the mess. The thought running through my head was how much it would cost me to replace this game.

Well we were sopping up and my friend Peter says "Dude! The cards are curling up!" And sure enough, the moisture was splitting the cards front from back as the corners started to curl away from each other! We freaked!

Well I grabbed the ironing board and iron, some paper towells, and a fan. We managed to dry out the cards and keep them from splitting any further. After a half hour interruption, we were on our way again.

It's amusing that the part of the game that was showing the least amount of wear was hit.
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9. Board Game: BANG! [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1016]
Tim Benjamin
United States
Los Alamos
New Mexico
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Playing Bang including the pre-teen son of our gaming group's host. Young man has already dropped an open beverage can on the floor and kicked another one over. His mom brings a round of some red liquid. I suggest (being the dad of two teen boys) that he perhaps should put it away from the game table. "Don't worry, I'm OK.....", bump, tip, splash, looking like real bullets were used. Quick action, minimal damage and it was his dad's copy anyway. Every indication is that he will still survive to make it to his teen years.
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10. Board Game: Puerto Rico [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:15]
Paul Burkhard
United States
Fort Collins
Colorado
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I had just spent most of the afternoon carefully downloading, printing, stickering, and cutting out all of the expansion tiles for Puerto Rico, took me about two hours. We sat down to a nice game of 4-handed when a "friend" stopped by, mostly drunk. He says he was "in the neighborhood" (we lived near a bar) and came by to see what we were up to. He proceeds to sit down, makes some dubm crack about "real men only playing chess." Then, he spills his huge travel mug full of coffee across the bank board! ARGGGHHH! Quick thinking on my part got most of the original tiles out of harm's way, but the cardboard and inkjet created expansion tiles were pretty much all destroyed.

He hasn't been invited back.
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11. Board Game: Firefight [Average Rating:5.80 Overall Rank:10212]
Fraser
Australia
Melbourne
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Ooh a little higher, now a bit to the left, a little more, a little more, just a bit more. Oooh yes, that's the spot!
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I know these are meant to be horror stories, but this one started off as a horror story.

Many years ago we were playing Firefight at a science fiction convention (obviously not much of interest going on at the time). Somebody had a big glass of Coke that got knocked over and basically there was a HUGE flood right across both the map sheets. The counters were washed off and the maps got very wet. We got paper towel and dried out the map sheets and counters as best we could and then packed up the game, thinking bad thoughs as Coke is VERY sticky at the best of times and this was not the best of times.

Fast forward to 6 months later. See Firefight in the cupboard, remember back to the glass of coke incident, think to self "I wonder how the maps are". Opened up the game took out the maps and there was absolutely no evidence of the previous mishap. They had not stuck together and there were no stains at all. Truly amazing. This said I would not recommend trying to repeat this experiment!
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12. Board Game: Monopoly [Average Rating:4.39 Overall Rank:15319]
Morgan Dontanville
United States
Charlottesville
VA
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Um...well I think that I win. In 3rd grade my father used to have to commute 2 hours to and from work each day, which put me in a professional babysitter's house, before and after school. I was having difficulty bonding with the other kids that were there (I mean what do you say to a girl that never ever showers and eats her boogers and scabs) and figured that perhaps there might be a common ground in boardgames. Of course, as I was just a youngun' I didn't have the depth of games that I do now, so Monopoly it was.

Being that kids aren't supposed to play indoors on nice days, we camped out in the driveway. Concrete pancake ass and pebble studded knees were sacrificed for real estate revenge.

At that age Monopoly can become quite heated, and of course this facilitated the ways in which we could mention how much we detested each other. None of us got along with, but there was Scab Girl who brought us all closer together. Our common disgust was brought out ten-fold. To make matters better, she was loosing, and loosing badly. Let the chiding begin.

As always in Monopoly, whoever is unfortunate enough to land on Boardwalk with hotels on it, is dealt the killing blow. And there she rolled. After laughter and fingerpointing, she fought back the best way that she knew how -- to utterly shock.

Time slowed to tar, as she leaned back, flipped up her dress, pulled down her drawers, and peed. The yellow arc shone in the sun. A fountain raining down all over Free Parking. She was Fluxus.


When you spill a drink on your board, the first thing you want to do is mop it up.

When someone pees on your board, you don't want to go anywhere near it.

What was once a heated game now became thoroughly warmed. This really put a new twist on beating the piss out of someone.

The nanny cleaned the game up as much as possible, Scab Girl was no longer welcome back into this house of misfits, and I was scarred. Strangely though, I kept the game.

Over the years, I would pull this out, and someone halfway through the game would eventually ask where the stain over Free Parking came from. I can only imagine what was running through people's mind as I would explain to fellow players nonchalantly, "Oh, you know, some girl pissed on it."

Perhaps, she knew better, perhaps she was the Dada prophetess of Eurogames to come. Perhaps she was the only one of us with taste (mmm ... scabs).

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13. Board Game: Talisman [Average Rating:6.38 Overall Rank:1753]
Gert Keijer
Netherlands
Utrecht
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Way, way way back, one of the first games i bought was Talisman, the green box, first edition.
On the very first evening i played with a couple of friends they mangaed to spill a cup of tea, a glass of Coke and a botlle of beer over the board and the cards. Off course they didn't dryed it proproperly so a couple of cards got stuck to gether and were damaged whe i pried them lose :-(.
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14. Board Game: Space Hulk [Average Rating:7.46 Overall Rank:429]
Michael Hayes
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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A friend and I kept all the many cardboard chips in 2 coffee mugs. A third friend turns up to watch, pours himself a nice big mug of coke: and watches the many genestealer counters float to the top.
Absolutely unsalvagable. From then on there was a strict "no counters in drinking vessels" rule

P.S Why do all the images of Space hulk suck? You'd have no idea what the game was like from all the pictures of non-standard minatures.
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15. Board Game: Beachhead [Average Rating:5.75 Overall Rank:11617]
Dan Edwards
United States
Shoreline
Washington
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This one is more of a "When Games Become Food" item.

This Yaquinto album game, long out of print, has one unique counter...an optional rule provides for a "Sgt. Stryker" unit, "The essence of the Hollywood Hero. As such, he has virtually superhuman powers".

This, however did not impress my cat, who, out of perhaps 250 equally tasty counters to chew on, picked this counter as the one, and only one, to nibble on when I left the game set up overnight. The cat had never done that before, or since. Go figure.
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16. Board Game: Once Upon a Time: The Storytelling Card Game [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:1278]
Andrea Angiolino
Italy
Rome
European Union
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Just after Christmas. I had a little bag in the rear-left corner of my car with a record for one of my dearest friends, a "Hellas" for her son (with carefully re-built cards in Italian made after the models taken here on BGG), some country honey from the countryside ("mielata" - very sticky resin honey) and a copy of "Once upon a time" to play with them when we meet for the present exchange. At 3.30 at night I am called by phone and I have to run by car to a hospital for a family emergence. My sister calls later and tell me to take it calm since she's dealing it. I go to the hospital anyway. At a crossing, a total idiot coming out of a party does not stop at the red traffic light and runs into my car at high speed, hitting the rear-left corner. Luckly, we are totally safe (even if later he'll pretend to have problem at his shoulder to cheat his insurance). My car is bent and in the end is sold as a wreck. One funny detail I remember is a kind of modern sculpture in the boot: the honey jar and the OUaT box both exploded in mid air, so I have a weird card castle glued together with resin honey in the middle of the trunk!
OUaT is now out of print in Italy, by the way...
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17. Board Game: Middle-earth [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:915]
Jesse Murphy
United States
Biloxi
Mississippi
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My parents have always lived in a part of town prone to flooding, and I lived in their converted garage, which happened to be several inches lower than the rest of the house. One night, around two in the morning, my younger brother runs into my room yelling something about rain and rising water. I jump out of bed, and land in two inches of water. Now, I rarely left anything on the lower shelves of my bookcase. In this case, however, I had just recieved a bunch of Mythos cards, and I had a large portion of my CCG collection on the bottom shelf. Well, my entire Middle Earth collection, and all of the two thousand or so new Mythos cards I had purchased became cardboard bricks. The Mythos cards were easily replaced, as they had only cost a few dollars to begin with. The real tragedy was my beloved collection of Middle Earth, which has yet to recover.
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18. Board Game: PitchCar [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:314]
Brian
United States
Unspecified
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Usually things go wrong when food or drink is spilled on a game, but then there are those strange occassions when it happens in reverse. Earlier in the evening, one of the players decided to get a mug of coffee. Later, when we decided to play Pitch Car, I made sure everyone knew no food or drink on the table for this game since people are moving around a lot. So to be extra extra safe, he put it on the floor, by the wall, and under a foldable chair. The game went on as usual, and out of coincidence, I happened to notice a player just holding two extra pucks in his fist. I asked him to put them down - you know - keep them dry. (I'm weird, ok?). Wouldn't you know it, a few turns later, he's trying to execute a few turns before the finish line when his puck catches an edge, flys up, hits part of the table, bouces off the carpet and *clink* right into the cup of coffee under the chair. Laughter ensued - I don't know if it was more from the puck going in the coffee or from my reaction - kind of like a "Oh no! Oh no! Oh no!" type thing... The brown puck was floating there - upsidedown - I quickly grabbed it and dried it off. Now the coffee colored puck actually smelled like coffee...

Fortunately, the puck was as good as new shortly after - but from now on we will have to keep in mind weird ricochet shots when putting away drinks...
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19. Board Game: World in Flames [Average Rating:7.50 Overall Rank:943] [Average Rating:7.50 Unranked]
David Brauner
United States
Oak Park
Illinois
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Backstory: well, perhaps one wouldn't realize this, but certain vacation destinations can be pretty gosh-darn boring--even if they are in foreign countries. For three Augusts in a row, I accompanied my parents to Italy for their annual working-vacations in Pesaro, Italy. There's not a whole helluva lot to do there if you don't like hanging out on the beach all day long.

So, I finally wizened up and brought World in Flames along to amuse myself whilst my sister flirted with all of the Italian guys. I had spread out the maps and other charts in the only floor space large enough to accomodate even the 1st Edition of this monster game--the kitchen/dining room. Regrettably, during one evening when my dad was preparing dinner, he dropped a bottle of red wine on the floor, flooding the production spiral (and possibly the maps). The wine was a total loss, but I managed to wring a few more years out of the game until it was once again assaulted.

My apartment in St. Louis flooded, further damaging WiF which had been residing on the floor (also, condensation dripped from the ceiling, ruining a few books and my computer's motherboard).

But, the plucky WiF struggled on until she was replaced by the more glitzy WIF:FE and no one wanted her at the garage sale. Her last journey was to the recycling bin.


Adieu, mein freund, adieu.

(I know, I know, I'm mixing languages, so sue me...)


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20. Board Game: Carcassonne [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:139] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
King of the Dead
United States
Los Angeles
California
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First day I got this game we went to the bar to play like we always do.

We were about four turns into a four player game and my friend tipped his beer over onto the tiles in play.

We all went into action and really no damage was done but for a tiny bit of one of the backs peeled off. No warping or anything.

He felt really bad but I told him that if I was overly worried about it I wouldn't have brought it to the bar in the first place.
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21. Board Game: Empires in Arms [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:954]
Jamie Graham
United States
Philadelphia
Pennsylvania
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The "Empires in Arms" unmounted gameboard is already somewhat infamous for being made of cheap paper (although the game is great).

The game board we use is now protected in a home-made wood and plexiglass device that even has a foam-lined top to hold the pieces onto the board between session, but the map still shows an orange-soda spill off the coast of Norway and a coffee stain in the Middle East.
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22. Board Game: Illuminati: Deluxe Edition [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:1357]
Breno K.
Brazil
Brasília
Distrito Federal
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We were playing and someone knocked over a cup of coke. Game over.

(yeah... pretty boring... but what can I say? "then NINJAS showed up!"? ninja )
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23. Board Game: Euchre [Average Rating:6.78 Overall Rank:1288]
Kevin J
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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I guess this doesn't count, but I feel like telling my story.

When I got back from university at the start of the summer this year, I decided on a whim that I wanted to build my own poker table. Something nice, with a padded rail and finished wood. I worked with my father for a week and a half on it, and it came out looking pretty good considering I'm not a craftsman.

I set it up downstairs, waiting for the upcoming games night to show it off to everyone. When three people showed up, we decided to christen the table with a game of euchre. Before I even dealt the first hand out, one of my friends spilled his neon pink cream soda on my brand new green felt-covered table.

Luckily, we were able to soak up quite a bit, and even five minutes after the spill, we were hard pressed to find any stain on it at all.
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24. Board Game: Cleopatra and the Society of Architects [Average Rating:6.81 Overall Rank:757]
gregory duff
United States
Ft.Worth
Texas
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This belongs in the near-spill-ended-in-catastrophe department. An experienced gamer (frequently on this very site) was playing a borrowed copy of Cleo(borrowed from a frequenter of this site) with myself and three others......while he was reaching for his bonus-scoring double sphinx, his elbow tipped over his drink...he was fast...he up righted that sucker quick.....only tiny drop spillage..meanwhile, the box cover and plastic quarry top fell off the nearby chair... in his haste....our hero put the plastic cover and box back in the chair
(his chair)...then rushed to the sink to retrieve a rag to dab the spill...after dabbing, he SITS on the box top...I and fellow gamers cringed.....he was non-plussed and assured us he would repair it so well that Cleo's mummy (and our unnamed benefactor of this borrowed gem of a game) couldn't tell the diff...well, he did repair it...you can't tell unless you see the tape strips inside the box and squint to see some box crinkle residue on the boxes side.
If you really must know who our Avatar blushing gamer is, blush see below:

Spoiler (click to reveal)
I can't tell you or he would kill me !!!!
shake shake shake



you bleepin box-crusher you !!!!!!!
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25. Board Game: Hex Hex [Average Rating:5.89 Overall Rank:5034]
Kristi Long
Scotland
Edinburgh
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When Games become Food, Part 2 --

We had a small group of people over and were playing a quick round of Hex Hex. We're actually somewhat casual about the games/food issue for many of our games, trusting that our friends are sufficiently adult to avoid spillage. On this occasion we had various snack options -- mixed nuts, some chips. All this proved to be a bit too much for my friend Nathaniel, who, who has been studying his cards, suddenly announced, 'uh oh, I just ate one of the chits'. Chips, chits, I suppose it's an easy confusion.

Luckily, unlike the case of the cat eating the unique chit, this was simply one of many, though we do tend to keep chit cups out of Nathaniel's reach now.
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